“Walnut Tree” stills recall Sardasht chemical attack victims’ pain, grief
Art and Experience: Stills taken by Majid Talebi on the set of the acclaimed movie “Walnut Tree” are on view in an exhibition in Tehran to recall the pain and grief the victims suffered from the Iraqi chemical attack on Iran’s Sardasht in 1987.
Director Mohammad-Hossein Mahdavian made the drama “Walnut Tree” in 2019 based on the true story of the profound tragedy of the chemical attack.
The movie tells the story of Qader Mulanpur, a man who was away when his family was affected by the chemical attack in a village near Sardasht. His effort to save his pregnant wife and their three children are in vain and they die one by one from the fatal wounds sustained as a result of the chemical attack.
On June 28, 1987, Iraq bombarded Sardasht and the surrounding region with chemical weapons, killing over 1000 and injuring over 8000 civilians, many of whom were permanently disabled.
The stills selected for the showcase that opened on Sunday at the Zemestan Gallery of the Iranian Artists Forum do not center on the stars of the film, but they are intended to depict the catastrophe itself.
“The main reason for organizing this exhibit is to express part of the pain and grief the people of the town have been suffering since the chemical attack,” Talebi told the Persian service of Honaronline.
The catastrophe was quickly overshadowed by the Iraqi chemical attack on Halabja in March 1988, however, the movie and the exhibition are aimed at turning the spotlight on the tragedy, he added.
“Members of the cast are not on the center stage at the exhibition, but I have tried to highlight the story of the film and the depth of the tragedy in the photos,” he noted.
The exhibition, which has been organized to commemorate the anniversary of the tragedy, will run until July 13.